Web technologies evolve all the time, opening a variety of new opportunities for businesses in different sectors. Every emerging trend can potentially reshape the entire digital space, change industry standards, and transform market conditions. So, if you want to build a state-of-the-art web solution, either by outsourcing web software development services or by relying on your in-house team, you must be aware of what is happening in this area.
Exoft has already helped many companies embrace digitalization and elevate business results with top-notch web apps and sites. In this article, we’ll outline top web development trends that will dominate in 2021.
Progressive web applications
The PWA technology gained developers and business managers’ attention a while ago, but it will continue to be in the spotlight this year. Simply put, a progressive web application is a web solution that loads like regular websites but delivers almost a native mobile app experience. For instance, it can contain such mobile-like features as offline access to cached content and push notifications. AliExpress, Forbes, and The Washington Post are great examples.
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Today, PWAs are considered the most promising trend in the web development world. They make browsing more user-friendly and eliminate the main downsides of websites (e.g., slowness, poor user experience). Another big advantage is that such web solutions can be built with HTML, CSS, JS, React, and Angular, all of which are proven web technologies. The ecommerce industry is currently adopting PWAs most actively, but the trend is gradually conquering other business sectors, too.
Focus on API development
Modern enterprise web solutions are rarely effective if they work in isolation. To properly perform their functions, most corporate systems must integrate with each other. That’s why today’s businesses strive to create a comprehensive IT infrastructure that will allow them to improve efficiency across all processes. The demand for all-round connectivity made the API-first approach one of the most important web development trends in 2021.
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Unlike the code-first approach, API development prioritizes building an application programming interface over the creation of other product features. In practice, it means that programmers develop API first and start building the rest of an application only when it’s ready. Doing so allows a development team to make changes more easily and minimize the risk of bottlenecks at the implementation stage. Besides, the API-first approach lets developers work in parallel, so one part of the team doesn’t have to wait until the other completes its tasks. Consequently, the development time is reduced, and development expenses are lower.
Optimization for voice search
While text searches continue holding a leadership position among the ways people interact with search engines, voice commands confidently gain popularity. According to the PWC report, 65% of respondents in the 25 to 49-year-old category said they use voice technologies at least once a day. Meanwhile, it’s estimated that more than 400 million units of smart speakers will be sold worldwide by 2025. So, we have all reasons to believe that the trend towards audio communication with user interfaces will keep growing this year.
Besides, statistics show that 51% of US digital buyers already use voice searches to get more information about products. For businesses, it means that they have to optimize user interfaces for voice searches to avoid losing traffic and consumers. The easiest way to do this is to use Web Speech API that allows for speech recognition. However, the wide adoption of natural language processing (NLP) will improve user voice experiences even further since the system will better understand the context and the logic of what was said.
While modern businesses mainly use AI-powered chatbots in sales, customer support, and marketing areas, it has the potential to spread over other activities, too. For instance, healthcare providers can use AI chatbots to provide the first line of primary care. Meanwhile, travel companies, banks, and real estate agencies can adopt AI-powered chatbots to stay in touch with customers 24/7 and resolve issues whenever they occur. In general, the number of AI chatbot use cases is endless, so we’ll definitely see some new ones in 2021.
For site visitors, the AI chatbot implementation is also advantageous. According to the Salesforce report, 69% of consumers choose to use chatbots to communicate with a brand since it’s the fastest option. Another study shows that about 80% of people who interacted with a chatbot are satisfied with this experience and provided positive feedback. With the further development of AI technologies, chatbots will become more self-learning and resemble conversations with real humans to a greater extent.
Single-page applications are another long-living trend in web development. But since, in 2021, it’ll be even more relevant than ever before, we just couldn’t ignore it. Unlike multi-page applications, SPAs don’t require page reloading when a user does some actions inside of them. Instead, these web applications render all data to a single web page. As a result, they’re faster and more lightweight, which leads to a more seamless user experience with no interruptions.
The most well-known SPA examples are Gmail, Google Maps, and Facebook. However, it’s expected that the adoption level of this technology will significantly increase this year. As the coronavirus outbreak forced millions of people to spend more time online, internet users’ demands and expectations have considerably grown. To win customer attention, companies now have to ensure truly impeccable web performance. And SPAs are a great way to make it possible.
Web development is a dynamic field where everything can change in a blink of an eye. Progressive web applications, API-first approach, voice search optimization, AI-powered chatbots, and single-page applications are only the most noticeable trends to look out for in 2021. But, of course, there are many more of them. So, if you’ve decided to build a web solution, do deeper market research and find a reliable tech partner.
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